Breastfeeding 101 – Tips for Moms, by Moms

April 18, 2023 3 min read

Breastfeeding 101 – Tips for Moms, by Moms

Breastfeeding can be intimidating – especially if you’re a first-time mom. Many new moms have questions about breastfeeding positions, face issues with low milk production and struggle with other breastfeeding problems.  Thankfully, help is at hand.

We’re here to demystify the process of breastfeeding with super simple tips to help you get started. In today’s read, we’ll share some practical breastfeeding tips that have been shared by real moms who have successfully breastfed their babies.

Breastfeeding benefits

Before we dive into the tips, let's take a moment to discuss breastfeeding benefits. Breast milk is the perfect food for babies, providing all the nutrients they need for healthy growth and development. Breastfeeding also has numerous health benefits for mothers, including a reduced risk of breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and postpartum depression. Best of all, breastfeeding benefits both you and your baby by building a stronger bond and promoting better sleep patterns. (Want even better sleep? Check out how our Eclipse Smart Soothercan help baby establish healthy sleeping patterns!)

How to Establish a Good Latch Breastfeeding

One of the most important aspects of successful breastfeeding is establishing a good latch. A good latch means that the baby is properly attached to the breast, which allows for efficient milk transfer and prevents sore nipples. To achieve a good latch, follow these steps:

  1. Hold the baby close to your body, with their head supported. For newborns, a cross-cradle hold works best.
  2. Wait for the baby to open their mouth wide, with their tongue down. You can encourage this by flicking your nipple by their nose and mouth.
  3. Quickly bring the baby to the breast, making sure that their lips are turned out.
  4. Allow the baby to take as much of the areola (the dark area around the nipple) into their mouth as possible.
  5. Make sure the baby's chin is touching the breast, with their nose clear for breathing.
  6. If the latch is uncomfortable, gently insert your finger into the baby's mouth to break the suction and try again.

Find a Comfortable Position

Finding the right breastfeeding position can make a big difference in your comfort level and milk production. Here are some popular breastfeeding positions to try:

  • Cradle hold: Hold the baby in the crook of your arm, with their head resting on your forearm.
  • Cross-cradle hold: Hold the baby across your body, with their head in the opposite hand from the breast you are nursing on.
  • Football hold: Hold the baby under your arm, with their legs tucked under your arm and their head at your breast.
  • Side-lying position: Lie on your side with the baby facing you, and nurse while lying down.

Experiment with different positions until you find one that works for you and your baby. Remember to support your back and arms with pillows or cushions to avoid strain. A breastfeeding pillow may be useful. Here is one of our favorites: My Breast Friend Nursing Pillow.

Boost Your Milk Production

Many new mothers worry about whether they are producing enough milk for their baby. Here are some tips to help boost your milk production:

  • Nurse frequently: Offer the breast whenever your baby shows signs of hunger, which can be as often as every 1-2 hours in the early weeks.
  • Make sure your baby is fully emptying the milk from each breast, as this helps stimulate milk production.
  • Drink plenty of fluids: Staying hydrated is important for milk production, so drink plenty of water, juice, or milk.
  • Breastfeeding and pumping: pumping can help stimulate milk production in-between nursing.
  • Supplements: Fenugreek and Blessed Thistle are said to promote milk production.
  • Eat a healthy diet: There are no specific breastfeeding diets, but eating a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, and protein can also help with milk production.
  • Get enough rest: Rest is important for milk production, so try to get as much sleep as possible, and avoid overexerting yourself.

Breastfeeding is challenging and there are many reasons why it may not be the right choice for you and your baby. However, if you choose to breastfeed, we hope these tips help you in your breastfeeding journey. Remember: fed is best!

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